Let me just preface this. Those of you who follow RochesterSubway.com know I am not trying to bring back the Subway—although if Mayor Duffy announced its re-opening tomorrow I’d promptly nominate him to be crowned King of Rochester. My mission is plainly stated at the bottom of every page on this site. I support any initiative that will improve the quality of life for all Rochesterians. A bike lane here or there. Perhaps a few good grocery stores downtown, etc. etc. My goal is to get Rochester thinking about the possibilities and to spark public dialogue.
Most of the feedback I get from my readers is very positive and I’ve had a lot of great ideas thrown my way. But for every 20 people I hear from, there’s usually one person who’s… well… a real visionary. This month’s award goes to Christine B. from Rochester. In fact, I may have to name the award after her. Christine makes the assumption that I am out to garnish her paycheck and use it to bring back the Rochester Subway. And oh boy is she P.O.’d!
A word of caution before you read her monologue… if you’re a Kodak employee, a “liberal”, unemployed, gay, or if you are homeless, some of Christine’s ideas may offend you. But if you read between the lines, I’m sure you’ll see where she’s going with this line of thought. Oh, and PLEASE share your opinions in the comments. I know Christine will appreciate your feedback…
ROCHESTERSUBWAY.COM: It was recently brought to our attention that the City of Rochester is taking bids from contractors to repair and/or fill the abandoned subway tunnel under Broad Street. Can you confirm this? If so, what are the details of the job?
Tom Hack: The fill is going to take place from Brown Street to the RR portal next to Nick Tahoe’s (it involves about 1900 lf out of 4600 lf total). We are maintaining the RR portal behind Nick Tahoe’s as that will serve as a new access/maintenance road into the remaining sections of the tunnel.
ROCHESTERSUBWAY.COM: When are you hoping to start the work?
Tom Hack: We are scheduled to open bids on October 19, 2009. We hope to have “actual” construction operations underway in early December 2009, however the bulk of the tasks won’t hit their stride until April-May 2010.
ROCHESTERSUBWAY.COM: What range do you expect the bids to come in at? (in $$)
Tom Hack: We anticipate that bids for the work will be in the range of $14-16 Million (+/-).
ROCHESTERSUBWAY.COM: Is this project part of a larger initiative? i.e. Is this just Phase 1 in filling the rest of the tunnel, or maybe prep work for some larger project involving Broad Street?
Tom Hack: This project is a standalone project but obviously it does has ramifications toward other city proposed initiatives. Four issues that come into play are:
Parking within the confines of the remaining rehabilitated sections of the Tunnel
Phase III and IV of Rochester’s Historic Canal District Initiative does envision partial use of this space for the creation of the West end Basin, however the timing of this phase is 15-20 years out and obviously the dynamics and market conditions may dictate other uses.
Stabilization and general enhancement of the corridor. This project does strengthen, link and unify the visual attributes of the surrounding land uses and neighborhoods. This is an overall initiative of the City and indirectly the streetscape amenities that we will be installing does add value in that regard.
The project does advance the Rochester Heritage Trail. The Rochester Heritage trail is a designated walkway linking the City’s multitude of historic feature, dating when downtown was a port on the Erie Canal and the burgeoning center of commerce, industry and social activism. This is a self guided walk that identifies historic sites and tells the stories of Rochester’s people, places, and cultures as they impacted development of our nation. (Think Boston’s Freedom Trial)
After the Erie Canal was rerouted south of downtown Rochester, the Rochester
Industrial & Rapid Transit Railway (the subway) was built in
its place as a link between the five different railroads and interurban trolley
lines that served the Rochester area. As the industrial landscape of Rochester
changed, and highways replaced the railroads, the Rochester subway gradually
became a relic of a bygone era. In 1956 the subway was abandoned and much of
its route was converted into Interstate 490 built to connect Rochester
with the New York State Thruway (I-90). Read more about the history of the Rochester Subway.
RochesterSubway.com exists to help spark
public dialogue around how we can better connect the neighborhoods of Rochester
NY, surrounding communities, and their cultural offerings. Rochesters
future is written in her past. Let's rediscover it.